If you suffer from bronchitis, the first thing you want is relief from breathing difficulty and chest congestion due to increased mucus and phlegm secretion.

Most people who have this condition immediately turn to antibiotics for relief.

However, taking antibiotics sometimes does more harm than good. You’ll can naturally cure the problem using some safe home remedies for bronchitis.

Bronchitis & It’s Symptoms

Bronchitis, which is a condition in which the bronchial tubes are infected and inflamed, is usually caused by viruses and not bacteria.

In fact, research shows that more than 90 percent of acute bronchitis cases are caused by viral infections which antibiotics cannot treat [1].

The Journal of American Medical Association reports of several clinical studies that have shown how antibiotics were unable to treat this condition [2].

The article further said that researchers have advised reducing the use of antibiotics for acute bronchitis as a cornerstone of quality health care [2].

This condition, which causes unpleasant symptoms such as dry cough, nasal congestion, chest pain, headache, sore throat, shortness of breath, wheezing, hoarse voice, cough with mucus and fever, can fortunately be alleviated by home remedies.

RELATED: 14 Quick Ways to Get Rid of Mucus Naturally

11 Natural Remedies for Bronchitis

Try seeking relief from a natural soothing agents such as the ones below:

1.  Onion

Throughout history, onion has been highly valued for its countless curative purposes.

Belonging to the same family as garlic, it also possesses similar pharmacological effects such as antibacterial, antiviral, anti-inflammatory, antiseptic and so on.

Experts explain that the natural antibiotic substances in onions can act as an expectorant that dissolve the mucus and relieve chest congestion.

These antioxidant and anti-inflammatory traits in onions generally come from their various flavonoids, but mostly from a compound called quercetin [3].

Many studies have indicated that quercetin has the ability to protect your cells against various lung problems, in addition to other diseases [4, 5].

This means that apart from controlling the infection that causes bronchitis, onion can also be used to treat other respiratory ailments.

What You’ll Need:

  • 1 teaspoon of raw onion juice
  • 1 teaspoon of honey

Recommended Directions:

  • Mix the raw onion juice with the honey.
  • Drink this mixture on an empty stomach every day for one to two weeks.
  • Try to include onions in your diet by incorporating them into salads, soups and stews.

2.  Honey

Honey won’t be referred to as the golden healer without good reason.

Since the ancient times, it has been used to treat a wide range of diseases, many of which have something to do with pathogenic bacteria and viruses.

That’s because honey is also a potent antimicrobial that can neutralize infections caused by pathogens.

In addition, honey can help soothe a sore throat and also proves to be an effective cough suppressant, according to the Mayo Clinic.

In a study that can be found in the Journal of Family Practice, it was stated that honey is a safe and effective alternative to over-the-counter (OTC) medications for coughs and colds in children with respiratory tract infections [6].

 What You’ll Need:

  • 1 teaspoon of honey
  • 1/2 teaspoon of black pepper powder

Recommended Directions:

  • Add black pepper powder to the honey.
  • Mix well.
  • Consume this mixture on an empty stomach daily for one to two weeks.

RELATED: 10 Health Benefits of Honey (Backed by Science)

3.  Turmeric

A popular curry powder, turmeric gets its bright yellow color from a substance called curcumin.

Curcumin is said to be responsible for most of turmeric’s beneficial effects for the health.

For example, studies have confirmed that it exhibits anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial effects that can soothe a sore throat.

A study published in the International Journal of Biochemistry and Cell Biology stated that curcumin could be a potential agent in the prevention and treatment of several chronic illnesses, including lung disorders, thanks to its anti-inflammatory activity [7].

Simply put, turmeric works in various ways in ameliorating bronchitis: it tones down inflammation of the bronchial tubes, it controls spread of infection-causing viruses, and it helps ease symptoms such as sore throat and chest congestion.

What You’ll Need:

  • 1 teaspoon of turmeric powder
  • 1 glass of milk

Recommended Directions:

  • Add the turmeric powder to a glass of milk.
  • Stir well.
  • Boil and simmer the mixture for a minute.
  • Drink the mixture on an empty stomach, two to three times per day to ease chest congestion.
  • Repeat remedy for one to two weeks.

4.  Ginger

Many people use ginger for their cooking not only because of its unique flavor but also for its enticing aroma.

Did you know that it can also be used to treat a vast array of health problems?

Ginger alone or with other natural expectorants has been proven effective in lung-related infections.

A study performed on the theory that ginger could help to relieve viral infections of the respiratory tract found that high concentrations of fresh ginger were able to stimulate the production of certain antiviral agents in the body [8].

These agents could be effective in treating viruses, particularly those that cause infections of the lung and the respiratory tract such as bronchitis [8].

What You’ll Need:

  • 1 teaspoon of grated fresh ginger
  • 1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon powder
  • 1 teaspoon of honey
  • A cup of water

Recommended Directions:

  • Boil water in a pot.
  • Add the grated ginger and cinnamon powder.
  • Let it simmer for a minute.
  • Turn off the heat.
  • Stir in the honey.
  • Drink this mixture twice a day for relief from bronchitis symptoms.

5.  Garlic

For centuries, garlic has been used as a medicinal herb in many cultures.

Historians say that garlic was taken as medicine by laborers during the time when the Egyptian pyramids were being constructed.

Today, it is still widely incorporated in herbal remedies for bronchitis and other breathing difficulties such as asthma and cough.

A substance present in garlic called allicin contains certain antimicrobial properties that can help treat several illnesses, including bronchitis [9].

Research conducted by a team of researchers from Iran show that garlic extract is capable of inhibiting the growth and spread of bronchitis-causing viruses [10].

What You’ll Need:

  • 3 cloves of garlic
  • 1 glass of milk

Recommended Directions:

  • Peel and chop the garlic cloves.
  • Mix them in a glass of milk.
  • Boil for two to three minutes.
  • Drink this mixture daily before bed for best results.

6.  Steam Therapy with Essential Oils

Countless health benefits have been linked to the use of essential oils.

Whether inhaled or applied topically, essential oils have a way of relieving symptoms and controlling diseases.

Lavender oil, for example, when inhaled can produce relaxation effects on a person’s mind and body.

Peppermint oil, meanwhile, is used to ease throat pain and breathing difficulties.

It has been established in various bodies of research that inhaling steam with essential oils can help clear blocked nasal cavities and expel the mucus.

The antibacterial properties of essential oils such as eucalyptus oil and other therapeutic oils, when used with steam, can help relieve symptoms of acute and chronic bronchitis such as cough and chest congestion [11, 12].

What You’ll Need:

  • 1 pot of water
  • 6 to 7 drops of eucalyptus or rosemary oil
  • A bath towel

Recommended Directions:

  • Boil the water.
  • Turn off the heat.
  • Add few drops of essential oils.
  • Cover your head with a bath towel.
  • Inhale the steam for few minutes.
  • Repeat remedy several times a day until condition clears.

RELATED: 11 Essential Oils for Bronchitis That Actually Work

7.  Salt Water

Here’s a quick way get relief from throat irritation:

Gargle with salt water.

How easy is that?

As it turns out, salt acts as a natural disinfectant and can soothe a sore throat.

Sea salt is in fact considered the most inexpensive and effective way to improve oral health [13].

It also reduces throat irritation and helps to loosen the mucus lining the throat [13].

Since it is readily available, you won’t have difficult time putting this remedy together.

It’s no surprise that this remedy has been used since the early years not only for respiratory problems but also for many other types of diseases.

What You’ll Need:

  • 1 teaspoon of salt
  • A glass of warm water

Recommended Directions:

  • Add the salt to a glass of warm water.
  • Mix well.
  • Gargle with this salt solution throughout the day to reduce throat irritation.
  • Follow this procedure twice or thrice a day for one to two weeks.

8.  Lemon

The health benefits of a lemon plant are well known, and its fruit, juice and peel are used to make medicine.

According to WebMD, researchers believe that the various health benefits of lemon are mainly due to the presence of an antioxidant called bioflavonoid.

A study in the British Journal of Pharmacology and Toxicology found that lemon peel extract contained various antioxidants, but mainly flavones which showed strong antimicrobial activity [14].

The high vitamin C and potassium content in lemon helps fight colds and flu.

Vitamin C is also a powerful antioxidant that powers up the body’s immune defense, making it less susceptible to infections.

This means that it’s not only a viable treatment for bronchitis, but also a suitable preventive measure.

Once you get treated for bronchitis, make it a habit to drink lemon juice so that you’ll be less likely to succumb to this same infection.

What You’ll Need:

  • A cup of water
  • 1 lemon wedge

Recommended Directions:

  • Add the lemon wedge to the cup of water.
  • Boil for one minute.
  • Strain it.
  • Drink this several times a day to get relief from a sore throat.
  • Do this two to three times a day for one week.

9.  Sesame seeds

In addition to their distinct flavor, sesame seeds are known for their rich source of fiber, protein and other dietary minerals such as calcium, iron and zinc.

However, it is their antimicrobial property that makes sesame seeds effective in treating bronchitis.

Several studies have found that sesame seeds contain bioactive substances called phenols, which may be responsible for their antimicrobial properties [15, 16].

According to a 2007 study featured in the African Journal of Traditional, Complementary and Alternative Medicines, sesame seed extract has “broad spectrum” inhibitory effects against harmful microbes [16].

It has been found to work on microorganisms such as Streptococcus pneumoniae, Staphylococcus aureus, and Candida albicans, among others [16].

A 2015 study conducted by Indian scientists, meanwhile, indicates that sesame seed extract is powerful enough to work even on microbes that can no longer be controlled by antibiotics [15].

If your bronchitis keeps on coming back, you might want to try this home remedy.

What You’ll Need:

  • 1 teaspoon of sesame seeds
  • 1 teaspoon of honey
  • 1/8 teaspoon of salt

Recommended Directions:

  • Add the sesame seeds and salt to the honey.
  • Mix well.
  • Consume this mixture daily before bed.
  • Follow remedy for up to two weeks.

RELATED: Quick-Acting Home Remedies for Pneumonia

10.  Water

Drinking water is necessary to maintain good health.

Not only does the body require water to perform various bodily processes, it also ensures that you don’t get dehydrated.

When you have bronchitis, it’s especially important to keep the body hydrated.

WebMD suggests that people with bronchitis should drink fluids every one to two hours.

Drinking fluids at warm temperatures can help to soothe a sore throat and also help to expel sputum.

It also helps thin the mucus that make it difficult for you to breathe.

This is the simplest and quickest way to alleviate the condition of bronchitis.

What You’ll Need:

  • A glass of warm water
  • 1 teaspoon of honey

Recommended Directions:

  • Add the honey to a glass of warm water.
  • Stir well.
  • Drink this mixture on an empty stomach.

11. Spiced Up Dishes

Spicy hot foods are a natural antidote to phlegm, cough, and chest congestion. According to several studies Indian mustard, cayenne pepper, wasabi, horseradish, etc. are very effective to clean up your bronchial secretions and give you relief from the related symptoms.

Fiery chili or cayenne pepper is rich in capsaicin. This important compound can help thin out accumulated phlegm or mucous in the bronchial tubes. Moreover the hot and spicy dishes can unclog the blocked sinuses.

If you don’t have any food sensitivity or allergic reaction to spicy foods, you are good to go with this home remedy for bronchitis.

What You’ll Need:

  • ½ a teaspoon of chili or cayenne powder
  • A cup of warm tea

Recommended Directions:

  • Mix chili powder with your tea and consume it twice daily.
  • Additionally, spice up your dishes with extra chili pepper to treat bronchitis and the symptoms.

Bottom Line

What you found here are simple yet effective remedies that can provide relief from bronchitis symptoms.

However, make sure that they are taken in moderation and if possible, with medical guidance.

If your condition does not improve, consult your doctor.

Let us know your experience of using any of the home remedies discussed here. Write in the comment section.

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